No watering the weeds

This has been my best Christmas holiday in recent memory.

Why? On top of the laughter and the joy was something even sweeter: never getting sick.

Nope, for the past four years, I’ve made it to the finish line (Christmas morning) and then collapsed in a heap as the flu bug ravaged my body.

Oh, I had a humdinger of a cold 2 weeks ago.  And a cold sore the size of Kansas to accompany it.  Pretty. Yeah, not so much.

But I never – not once – not this year – got the flu.

No body aches while wrapping presents.

No fevers while cooking breakfasts.

No wishing for bed while entertaining a house-full.


And I think I might know why.

This year, I stopped doing much of what I’ve always done.

I didn’t sign us up for Holiday visits.

I put up 1/4 of the decorations, and even less than last year.

I mailed only a few Christmas cards and most were to elderly aunties. If you received one, you might be elderly. 🙂

I never made fudge and I barely baked.   Everyone plowed through the chocolate covered peanuts, though.

I wrapped quickly and with industrial-strength tape.  (Hubbs has since been renamed “He who was not amused.”  I laughed my face off as he tried to open gifts.  Still am. Not apologizing.)

Yes I’ve stayed up, but I’ve also read up, slept in, and slowed down.

I’ve paid attention to what matters most to me and I’ve kicked my inner lizard to the curb, surrounded myself with battery chargers and heeded my own advice.

I didn’t continue rituals just because I always had.

I didn’t allow time for relationships that aren’t healthy for me.

Instead, I cultivated joy and rest, peace and quiet, laughter and music and happiness.  I harvested love and romance and take out menus and days without schedules.  I stopped shoulding on myself.

I didn’t water the weeds.

How about you?  Can you resist “watering the weeds?”

sunflower me

Here comes 2014. Let’s ignore the weeds & embrace the flowers in our lives!

Categories: Attitude, Faith, Family, Forgiveness, Fun, Growth, Holidays, Home, Joy, Life Lessons, Opinion, Personal, Self Discovery, Thoughts, Uncategorized, Women, Work | Tags: , , , , , , | 26 Comments

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26 thoughts on “No watering the weeds

  1. Instead of cooking we enjoyed dinner at Golden Corral an all you can eat buffet… totally beat having to shop, cook and clean up after 16 people 🙂

  2. I did the same thing. No elaborate baking. I was all itchy about it and finally made a half batch of something I like but that’s it. I’m not obsessing about anything and the decorations are few but nice.

  3. Your posts always make me smile; this one especially. I think it’s wonderful when we realize that we don’t even have to ATTEMPT to do it all!!! I’m glad you remained well through the Christmas holiday!

  4. Lucky you! So glad you were able to enjoy it all germ free. Right now…that sounds so nice. Unfortunately, I got an acute sinusitis that has left me without a voice… No one recognizes me when I answer the phone, “Uh…is that you, G?” How did that happen? GS 1 and 2 arrived with colds, coughing, sneezing, the works…but that didn’t keep me from cuddling and tickling. All in all it was a wonderful week though. But, it would have been nice to feel a bit better.

    • Oh, I’ve had that same crud you write of, ugh! So sorry that you weren’t feeling quite a 100%, hope you recover soon!

      Cheers! MJ

  5. “I stopped shoulding myself” – bravo!! I’m working on it…

  6. “Do what makes you happiest” is my advice to people who ask….now if I can only do that myself. 😉

  7. I took exactly this approach this year. Instead of every cookie, two batches of favorites. Instead of elaborate gift wrapping, one paper for all, nice bows. Instead of every decoration in sight, I culled the ones I had and took those I no longer used to the church resale shop.

    It was absolutely lovely, and the best part is – no post-holiday letdown. It’s just great.

    • Beautiful ideas – especially the Church resale shop. I have 2 basement shelves full of Christmas “stuff” that I don’t want or use, but they’re “too nice” to throw away – you’ve just given me a great idea. Thank you 🙂

      Happy New Year! MJ

  8. Lindsey (Currie) Dubois

    Your holiday sounds like a dream! Congrats on your break up with the “shoulds!” My holiday however, was spent sick, with the most horrendous head cold, fever, chills, house sitting, bouncing around, making gifts for my students, helping the kids make presents for their parents…. Not pretty. Today was my first down day since….awhile.

    So, reading your post brought me some holiday peace.

    Thank you!

    Happy 2014 ahead,

    • I have to say, it was a dream 🙂

      sorry you ended up sick .. I’ve been right where you were, feeling wretched but still with plenty to do – ugh!

      feel better soon, Lindsey!
      Cheers for the new Year! MJ

  9. Great for you!! One of my favorite expressions is to stop shoulding on someone. I learned it in a very cool parenting class. Anyway, I am so very proud of you for living your authentic holiday!! This Christmas we opted to make it just the 3 of us here in our little house, that was messy. I perpetuated a small fib to some local extended family so they’d leave us alone (ahhhh). I stayed in my PJ’s until we sat down for dinner. I even cooked dinner in PJ’s. It was a very enjoyable and relaxing day for us.

    • …. ooh … the stay away fib! Ha! I love it — good for you 🙂 I can sense the decadence you must have felt in pulling that off. cheers for the New Year!

  10. love it. Lots of wisdom in this one if someone is listening! Had a conversation along these lines last week with someone we were on vacation with. She was getting frazzled (and in large measure/ but not completely) she was doing it to herself. I tried to suggest she needed to build some “margin” into her life, went on to illustrate what that looks like in my own life after years of being driven. Don’t think she get’s it yet, although she did bring up that word 2 or 3 times later on 🙂 so who knows…. I can definitely hear that word coming through loud and clear reading this one. Glad your family had a good Christmas. DM

    • Yep — remember in school when we had enough margins we could doodle in them? I miss those days. Great perspective as always, DM.

      Happy New Year!

  11. Lovely sounding holiday! First time I heard the word “shoulding”. Cannot wait to use it on me! Happy New Year!

  12. I’m sure envious of the way you gave up the stressful stuff and just relished the good stuff. This makes me realize that I really need to stop watering my own weeds. I seem to always think that doing it all, as it’s always been done, will someday become the magical recipe for a perfect holiday. And it never is. I had my share of stress this year, but still had wonderful moments with my immediate family. My goal for next year is to do things more like you – max out the good and minimize the bad. Happy New Year, MJ!

    • It only took me years and years of the “other” way to learn that it wasn’t working for me. One of these years, maybe when I’m about 70, I expect to be really good at cutting out the clutter and stepping on the weeds 🙂

      Cheers to you!

  13. Pingback: The “Un-Christmas” Christmas cookie | Emjayandthem's Blog

  14. Pingback: On watering | Emjayandthem's Blog

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